With a Chase credit card, you might be tempted to exchange your points for convenient options like gift cards, cash back, or Apple products once you start accruing rewards. Nonetheless, using points in the Chase travel portal or transferring rewards to partners are some of the greatest uses for Chase points that are available.
This brief guide provides some advice to help you get the most value out of your redemption options if you’re unsure exactly how to use your Chase points or which redemptions yield the highest value.
How can I redeem my Chase points?
To use your Chase points for redemption, sign into your account using the Chase mobile app or desktop browser, then use your account to access the Ultimate Rewards portal. Make sure to create an account as soon as possible if you haven’t already so you can utilize your rewards.
The Ultimate Rewards portal will open as a separate dashboard from your Chase account when you click on the link. Once there, you can select how to use your points from a variety of menu options, such as Pay Yourself Back, Chase Dining, gift cards, and cashback. You can redeem your points for the chosen award by following the on-screen instructions after you’ve decided on your redemption option.
Select the particular card you wish to use to view the amount of Ultimate Rewards points that can be redeemed if you have multiple Chase accounts that accrue points. You can choose to switch between your various card accounts and accounts as needed. You can use the “combine points” feature in the Ultimate Rewards portal to move points from one card to another if you don’t have enough for your desired redemption options.
Review your redemption options
Once you’re in the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, clicking “Earn / Use” at the top or using the side menu should allow you to see a variety of redemption options. Among them are:
- Gift cards
- Pay with points with Amazon.com or PayPal
- Apple Store
- Pay Yourself Back
- Transfer to travel partners
A brief summary of these choices and how valuable they are in relation to other redemption options are provided here.
In contrast to many other travel credit cards, selecting cash back maintains the value of your points. In addition to having the choice to deposit your earnings into any account you choose or as a statement credit on the card you used to accrue the points, you will receive one cent for every point you earn.
Chase Sapphire, Freedom, and Ink credit cardholders can also use Chase Dining to redeem rewards; however, owners of Sapphire credit cards are also eligible for the Sapphire Private Dining Series. Your points can be redeemed for home meal kits, special dining experiences, and other things. Options and values for redemption, however, differ.
Normally, gift cards earn you one cent per point; however, occasionally, there are exclusive promotions that allow you to receive better values. If there’s a 10% off sale that week, for instance, you might receive a $100 gift card for 9,000 points rather than 10,000.
Gift card choices are also different and subject to change. Popular choices that are frequently offered come from retailers such as Ulta, Lowe’s, DoorDash, Kohl’s, and Airbnb.
Pay with Points with Amazon.com or PayPal
During the checkout process, Pay with Points enables you to exchange your points for purchases made on Amazon.com or through PayPal. But the value of each point in this redemption option is only 0.8 cents, so 100 points equal 80 cents.
Although it’s a nice option, you can redeem your points for statement credits at a rate of one cent per point, so this isn’t necessarily the best use of your points.
Additionally, you can apply your points toward Apple accessories, Mac computers, iPhones, iPads, AirPods, watches, and other products. You can pay the remaining amount with Chase points with cash if you have 20 percent of the purchase price in points.
The prices on the official Apple website and those at the Apple Store are similar. Promotions are occasionally offered as well, particularly during the holidays. The latest offer increased the value of points redeemed for Apple products by 50%, but it was available to Chase Sapphire Reserve owners only. In the meantime, Chase Sapphire Preferred cardholders received 25% more value from Apple for their points.
Chase Pay Yourself Back
When you redeem your rewards for statement credits toward qualifying spending categories—which are subject to change—Chase Pay Yourself Back allows you to receive greater value for your money.
Pay Yourself Back’s primary benefit is that, compared to using the cashback method to redeem your points for a statement credit, your points will be worth more in cash.
Through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, you can also make reservations for travel-related services like hotels, flights, and car rentals. If you use the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card or the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card to make travel reservations through the portal, you will also receive a 25 percent bonus point value. On the other hand, when you use the Chase Sapphire Reserve® to book travel through Chase, you receive 50% more value for your rewards.
You can earn 10X points on hotels and car rentals booked through the portal and 5X points on airfare booked through Chase when you use your Chase Sapphire Reserve. In the meantime, all travel reservations made through the portal qualify for 5X points with the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.
It’s crucial to keep in mind that you can use the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal to book travel without using all of your points. You still have the option to book using a combination of rewards and cash if you don’t have enough points for redemption.
Transfer to travel partners
Lastly, and possibly most advantageously, you can transfer your points to Chase travel partners. If you own an eligible Chase credit card, such as the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Ink Business Preferred, or the Chase Sapphire Preferred, you can transfer points to a variety of partners at a 1:1 ratio. With this redemption option, your points are usually worth something, but this is particularly true if you’re booking a premium cabin for domestic or international travel.
With qualifying Chase cards, transfer partners include:
- Aer Lingus, AerClub
- Air Canada Aeroplan
- British Airways Executive Club
- Emirates Skywards®
- Flying Blue AIR FRANCE KLM
- Iberia Plus
- JetBlue TrueBlue
- Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
- Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards®
- United MileagePlus®
- Virgin Atlantic Flying Club
- IHG® Rewards Club
- Marriott Bonvoy®
- World of Hyatt®
What’s the best way to redeem my Chase points?
To generally get the most value out of your points, use Chase to redeem them for travel or transfer them to other travel partners. This is because many Chase airline and hotel partners offer enhanced redemption values, and eligible Chase cardholders receive 25–50% more value when they redeem points for travel through Chase.
Transferring points to a Chase travel partner often yields a value of two cents per point or significantly more. However, to find out which option requires the fewest points overall, compare the price of making a reservation through the Chase portal versus transferring points to a partner.
Having said that, it might make the most sense to use your points to purchase gift cards, cash back, or statement credits if you don’t often travel. Using rewards is made simple by all of these options, especially since cash back and statement credit redemptions begin at just $.01.
Conversely, using PayPal or Amazon.com to redeem your points during checkout will yield the lowest value for your points. But, there might be an occasion when you should use this specific redemption option, like around the holidays or when making a significant purchase.
The bottom line
Because Chase Ultimate Rewards is one of the most flexible credit card reward programs available, it makes sense to accrue rewards through credit card use.
However, to maximize the value of your rewards, you should be familiar with the specifics of this program and the available redemption options. Take pride in your hard-earned points—after all, you worked hard to earn them.